An Experimental Study of Collective Deliberation

TitleAn Experimental Study of Collective Deliberation
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsGoeree JK, Yariv L
Date PublishedMay 2011
ISBN Number00129682
Keywords1130:Economic theory, 9130:Experiment/theoretical treatment, Business And Economics, Communication, Decision making, Econometrics, Information, Preferences, Studies
AbstractWe study the effects of deliberation on collective decisions. In a series of experiments, we vary groups' preference distributions (between common and conflicting interests) and the institutions by which decisions are reached (simple majority, two-thirds majority, and unanimity). Without deliberation, different institutions generate significantly different outcomes, tracking the theoretical comparative statics. Deliberation, however, significantly diminishes institutional differences and uniformly improves efficiency. Furthermore, communication protocols exhibit an array of stable attributes: messages are public, consistently reveal private information, provide a good predictor for ultimate group choices, and follow particular (endogenous) sequencing. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]